CLEVELAND, Ohio -- An attorney representing Jimmy Haslam says the Cleveland Browns owner and CEO voluntarily agreed months ago to sit for depositions in a civil lawsuit.
On Friday, however, he was served with a notice to appear at a deposition in Knoxville on Dec. 13 on the Pilot Flying J rebate scandal.
"Mr. Haslam's deposition is not warranted by the facts in these cases and plaintiffs' pursuit of his deposition is nothing more than harassment," said Steve Brody, Haslam's legal counsel. "As we advised the plaintiffs more than six months ago, Mr. Haslam is nevertheless eager to put this gamesmanship behind him and therefore voluntarily agreed to sit for deposition by the remaining civil plaintiffs."
The lawsuit was filed by trucking companies that didn't take part in an $85-million settlement between Pilot Flying J and other trucking companies in connection with a rebate scandal.
"It is important to remember that these plaintiffs opted out of a class action settlement that would have paid them any money owed on their fuel transactions with the company, plus interest, in the apparent belief that litigation might get them a windfall," Brody said.
Haslam has not been criminally charged and has denied any wrongdoing.